Jeffrey Lurie had simply had enough. The Chip Kelly experiment in Philadelphia is officially over, and it’s time to pick up the pieces. But Eagles fans have to wonder what exactly went wrong.
Here’s a brief look at Kelly’s 10 bggest football sins (in no particular order).
1. Disowning DeSean
In 2014 prior to his second season as Eagles head coach, Kelly cut loose DeSean Jackson (who would go on to end Philly’s playoff hopes with the Redskins in back to back seasons). Jackson had a career year with 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns for Kelly in 2013.
2. Shrugging off Maclin
Kelly let another Eagles sparkplug go at wide receiver, Jeremy Maclin, who opted to reunite with Andy Reid in Kansas City. In 2014, Maclin had his career year with 1,318 yards and 10 touchdowns. Maclin and Jackson were replaced by first, second, and third round picks whose production has been stagnant.
3. Draft ineptitude
Kelly took Marcus Smith with the Eagles’ first round pick in 2014. Smith would not record a single tackle during his rookie year and sparingly played behind Connor Barwin and Brandon Graham in his second season. Kelly passed on several extremely talented players with the pick. His track record in the draft has not been too impressive — for a guy with great college credentials.
4. So long Shady
In a patented Kelly shocker, the coach swapped LeSean McCoy, fresh off of–you guessed it–twocareer years with 1,607 yards in 2013 and 1,319 in 2014, in exchange for Kiko Alonso. Alonso was hurt for most of the season and routinelylooked lost or out of place at inside linebacker.
5. No offensive line
After an incredible 2013 that saw the Eagles’ entire offensive line play all 16 games together as the Birds led the league in rushing, Kelly not only refused to draft any o-line help, he also waved goodbye to Evan Mathis and Todd Herremans while adding no one.
6. Big money Murray
After guaranteeing$18 million to DeMarco Murray as part of a five-year, $40 million deal, Kelly really did not put his high-priced running back (one who led the NFL in rushing in 2014) in a position to succeed. He also didn’t show any real commitment to the run as Murray’s frustration echoed that of Eagles fans all season.
7. Too fast
The Eagles fast-paced offense, when it fired on all cylinders, was a sight to behold. But, as fans know, the offense sputtered more often than it strived, and as a result three-and-outs forced the defense to stay out on the field for the most plays in football. It’s hard to succeed as a defense when you’re continually hung out to dry.
8. No adaptation
Philly’s offense got worse and worse as Kelly’s tenure continued on. After ranking second in offense his first two years the offense was stale and unimaginative in 2015. Defenses clearly knew what was coming, and Kelly showed nothing new or innovative.
9. Lost the locker room
The Eagles had no shortage of drama this offseason, with allegations of racism a distraction during training camp and several unhappy departures coming back to haunt the Birds. While the Eagles stood together, they were clearly never a cohesive unit under Kelly’s leadership.
10. Big-headed Chip
Finally, his ego got the best of him. Kelly, reportedly, was asked by Lurie to give up some of his roster control and the coach refused, and was fired. He then went on the record with Jay Glazer saying he wanted to stay in the NFL. Maybe he will be better off somewhere else. But in the pressure-cooker that is Philadelphia, fans are simply left to think it was hubris that killed their former coach.